During the fourth and fifth grade years, we continue to develop Independence, Community Membership, and Academic Fluency. 4th, and 5th grades are years when students become increasingly independent and self-motivated learners.
The advisors’ role in the intermediate is to guide students to greater levels of intrinsic curiosity and drive, while at the same time carefully supporting and scaffolding their learning. Students also begin to take on more significant roles in our school community: we buddy with primary students, lead and participate in class and grade-level meetings, and contribute our energy to service and art projects.
The 4-5 is also a place of serious academic rigor, as students refine and practice the writing process, read and discuss high-quality literature, analyze and apply a variety of mathematical concepts and skills, make serious learning inquiries into scientific questions, and explore their world through history and current events.
In the 4-5 program, students generally stay with one advisor throughout the day. There are some exceptions to this: sometimes students work in challenge-level cohorts; sometimes two or more advisors will work together on a project or a unit; and often we simply pop into each others’ room to take a peek or lend a hand.
Students in the upper elementary grades are given many opportunities to drive the direction and pace of their own learning; to experience hands-on, inquiry-based lessons and units of study; and to take on leadership roles among their peers. Each student learns differently, and in the 4-5 each student learns deeply. There are many presentations of learning throughout the year, which give the students a chance to demonstrate the serious, meaningful work they do during their fourth and fifth grade years at Trillium.